Mrs May: Brussel’s Colonial Governor

For those of us who participated in the modern-day Peasant’s Revolt (as Rod Liddle so aptly described the Brexit vote in this week’s Spectator), we must have known in our hearts that it was all doomed, that the establishment would never permit us to leave the EU. For a day or two last week, Mrs Day’s grotesque deal having provoked condemnation from all sides of the House, it seemed that a new leader might emerge and that something of Brexit might be salvaged. Even at this late stage, Article 50 could be revoked, and our March withdrawal delayed, to allow time for a new deal, or at least a managed no deal, to be brokered. But the political establishment has moved quickly to shore up Mrs May’s position.

On Thursday, it seemed that Remainers and Brexiteers alike were agreed that the deal was worse than staying it. Its defects were succinctly summarised by Dominc Raab, the Brexit Secretary, in his resignation letter: The arrangements for Northern Ireland represented ‘a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom’, the terms of the indefinite backstop arrangement amounted to ‘a hybrid of the EU Customs Union and Single Market obligations’ without ‘any democratic control over the laws to be applied, nor the ability to decide to exit the arrangement’, and as a consequence, the phase two trade negotiations would be ‘severely prejudiced’ against the UK. Raab should know: he negotiated the deal. Even Nick Timothy, May’s former advisor, declared the deal ‘a capitulation’. Writing in the Telegraph, he noted that it comprehensively failed the tests, the key principles, that May herself set out in her Lancaster House speech of January 2017 – the speech that raised so many of our hopes. Timothy should know: he drafted the Lancaster House speech.

May’s spiel about ‘delivering’ Brexit, restoring control over this and that, was at last being exposed for what it really was. All that has been agreed is that we will continue to pay billions to remain in the Customs Union pending a yet-to-be agreed trading arrangement over which the EU will have the final say. What will be left of ‘control’ over our fisheries and our borders, or of possible free trade deals, once the negotiations have been concluded to the EU’s satisfaction is anyone’s guess since the EU will regard the backstop as forming the basis of our ‘Future Economic Partnership’. As Michel Barnier has made clear, Britain’s future trading relationship will now be based on Britain’s remaining in a single customs territory with the EU.

What a difference a couple of days makes. One can only admire the speed and skill of the Number Ten spin operation. Yes, the deal may not be perfect, but it is the best we could negotiate. There are inevitably compromises in any negotiations. Mrs May is a determined and resilient leader who has fought tirelessly to secure ‘the best deal’ in ‘the national interest’. Besides – and this is the clincher – since this is the only deal on offer, the alternative is either ‘no deal’ (which the government has spent months depicting as ‘catastrophic’ as part of a carefully orchestrated campaign, and for which it has deliberately made minimal preparations) or ‘remain’. So, if you want Brexit, any sort of Brexit, you had better back her. If you don’t, you’ll get a general election and Corbyn.

Will this blackmail succeed? At present, the House of Commons arithmetic is stacked against the deal getting through in December. But a month is a long time and Mrs May’s supporters must be banking on scaring enough Brexiteers and DUP members with the threat of Corbyn, and on attracting enough Labour MPs from Leave voting constituencies who support a soft Brexit, to tip the balance.

Will Corbyn stand firm? He gave a fine speech in response to Mrs May on Friday, made all the salient points about us surrendering our sovereignty (a future Labour government would also thereby be hamstrung), and announced that Labour would be opposing the deal. Whatever one thinks of Corbyn, he at least understands, like Michael Foot before him, that the EU is a bureaucratic antidemocratic monstrosity.

For Conservatives, the prospect of a Corbyn government is not a pleasant one. But at least we shall be able to vote it out of office after five years. If Mrs May’s shabby deal is implemented, there will be no comeback. It might even come about that, out of the ashes of defeat, the Conservative party will rediscover some true conservative principles.

All therefore depends on Corbyn standing firm.

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8 Comments on Mrs May: Brussel’s Colonial Governor

  1. Sheilagh, I fear that Theresa May is a puppet leader, (either witting or unwitting, I am not sure) for some deep establishment organisations( including the CBI, the senior civil service, and the EU itself) who are determined to overturn the democratic will of the people of the United Kingdom. What is required at this moment is a British Lech Walesa, there was a man who knew how to stand up to the bullying of supra-national, anti-democratic, political organisation.

  2. We in Asia are puzzled by May’s (seemingly almost wilfully) weak negotiating and how she managed to get such an awful “deal”. The UK does not even claw back sovereignty over its own laws, as the ECJ remains the final court of appeal. The EU is Hotel California: you can check out any time but you can never leave!

  3. On a Radio 4 programme last weekend the CEO of a large corporate was answering the typical BBC gentle question about why we should remain in the EU. His answer “I represent not only the shareholders, but also my employees” revealed a feudal attitude to democracy, and thus he unintentionally provided an insight into the attitude of all those establishment figures who support the EU, this response went unchallenged by the BBC goon. The fact that Barnier, Tusk, and (behind the scenes) Blair et al are willing to create a situation that could re-start ‘the troubles’ in Northern Ireland, just so that they can pressurise the United Kingdom into remaining in their ghastly ‘European Project’, shows what merciless and ruthless people they are, as, of course, the population of Greece know only too well. Our fathers and grandfathers risked their lives to preserve democracy and freedom, the contemporary deep establishment aren’t even willing to risk their bonuses.

  4. “But at least we shall be able to vote it out of office after five years”- Are you sure?

    What if a Corbyn Labour government lowers the voting age and “Momentum-ises”the electorate?

  5. As a natural (small ‘c’) conservative, I haven’t voted for the Tories since 1987 – ever since the ‘Conservative’ party was hijacked by European social democrats. I have voted Ukip up until now.

    The thought of a Labour government under Corbyn fills me with horror – and yet, for the first time in my life, I am going to vote Labour at the next election as I want to see this Tory party utterly destroyed.

    They were entrusted to fulfil their manifesto promises and exploit the huge range of opportunities that the Brexit vote provided. Instead, under this dreadful Prime Minister, they have brought humiliation and, frankly, embarrassment.

    I think that the implications for the rule of law and civil order and obedience are going to be profound.

    • Voting Corbyn into power will destroy the country. The activists will replace him with Macdonnell and then will begin the process of remove the monarchy – install a president for life, the establishment of a Nomenclatura and we will be under communism. The armed forces will be neutered, and the nuclear umbrella abandoned. The Muslim population will explode as the Labour party seeks to import foreigners who will support it. Corbyn has as much chance of being our PM as my neighbour’s cat; the British people are not that stupid.

      But May must go – she is fundamentally unattractive to the electorate, and nakedly ambitious.

  6. ‘Whatever one thinks of Corbyn, he at least understands, like Michael Foot before him, that the EU is a bureaucratic antidemocratic monstrosity.’

    More likely he thinks it’s a Jewish conspiracy.